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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

THE GOSSIP Played Webster Hall

The Gossip! played Webster Hall in NYC on Tuesday night, a celebration of sorts for the release of their new live CD/DVD. One could say it was all about the music, which was fantastic, but there was a vehemently political tone to lead singer Beth Ditto's performance. Not only did she speak out, ostracizing media monsters like Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and Spin Magazine; she led the sold-out wild crowd in an encore chant of Patti Smith's 'People Have the Power'. She also raised her voice concerning the ongoing Democratic primaries, stating that we, the left, should come together and be as one. "No McCain", Ditto repeated in one of the many political interludes between the potent and raucous renditions of tracks like the pre-encore closer 'Standing in the Way of Control', the rockin' cover of Wham's 'Careless Whisper', 'Listen Up' which was preluded by a brief cover of Dolly Parton's '9 to 5', and the infectious sing-a-long version of 'Coal to Diamonds'. And that doesn't even cover the highlight of the evening when Ditto, seemingly impromptu, launched into an acapella cover of Cat Power's 'Metal Heart'.

With all the politics in the air, my friends and I couldn't help but launch into a political arguement of our own. Just months ago Ditto was pimping herself with the Devil of all media, Perez Hilton. A couple of weeks ago, Perez stated that "Justin Timberlake, The Gossip, and Adele" were dead to him. Could Ditto's media tirade be in part a reaction to Perez's actions? Whatever the case, she makes a good statement. I only wonder why she ever saddled up to Perez in the first place.

Drama and gossip aside, The Gossip! are an incredible live band and will become even bigger superstars in the future.

-photos by Scot Bowman

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